Torsion IM (renamed Ricochet in June 2014) is a decentralized real time instant messenger alternative to TorChat that runs on the Tor network. Available for Windows, Mac and Linux, during installation you will be given the option to connect directly to the Tor network or if you are behind a restrictive firewall or in a country that filters the Internet and blocks Tor nodes, you can arrange your network settings.
Torsion Ricochet network settings you can specify any open port that is not blocked by your firewall, or, enter a Tor bridge address that will get around ISP censorship. Tor bridge relays are not listed anywhere, you can only get them via email following the instructions described in the Tor project website.
There is no need to create an account, a
Torsion IM Ricochet contact address will be automatically created for you when you install the software, in the form of “ricochet:hslmfsg47dmcqctb“, this will also be your login credentials, no need for a password, registration details are virtually zero, no email, no nothing, just a cryptic torsion: address (changed to ricochet: in June 2014) and the nick of your choice. The messenger interface is easy as pie, it has two buttons, a plus sign where you add a torsion ID contact address to chat with that person and a settings button that lets you see your list of contacts and remove them.
You will not have to separately install Tor software to get the
Torsion IM Ricochet running, the program automatically connects to the Tor network. You can browse the Internet with your real computer IP while the messenger chat is anonymously routed through Tor. I tried to run Torsion IM Ricochet from behind a VPN (LT2P) and it worked smoothly, with no lagging time and no network trouble.
This is a marvellous metadata free instant messenger that gets the job done, no emoticons or sounds or distractions of any kind, just plain text to get to the point when planning the next revolutionary action over the Tor network, without any central server that could be compromised and with data encrypted over the wire, it can resist censorship and monitoring.
Torsion IM Ricochet has not been audited by anybody but it is open source and fairly well documented. The messenger will not interoperate with other protocols and both parts need to be using the same program, to convince your friends to stop using insecure Windows Live Messenger and Yahoo, you count with the wonderful benefit of not having to explain to them what Tor is, Torsion IM Ricochet will configure itself to use the Tor network during installation and it will enable people to use it straight away without reading any manual and not affecting their browser settings.
Note: Experimental and not endorsed by the Tor project.